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Visiting the Galapagos Islands had been at the top of my bucket list for a long time. I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to check this destination off my list in November 2022 and it was beyond expectations.

 

Celebrity Cruises offers 10-, 11- or 16-day Galapagos trips where you are escorted from Quito, Ecuador to Baltra, Galapagos on a Celebrity chartered flight. Before and after, you are welcomed at a 5 star hotel in Ecuador, which is all part of the package.

The Ship - Celebrity Flora

My ship, the Celebrity Flora, is a custom-built ship made to sail exclusively in the Galapagos. It’s an all-suite luxury ship that holds 100 passengers. 

 

The Flora features several environmentally friendly systems, including anchorless technology (dynamic positioning) that maintains the ship’s position without the need for a heavy anchor, which can damage the sensitive sea floor. To cut down on the noise disturbance to marine animals, the azipod engine thrusters are housed in rubber casing which mutes the noise. 

 

Celebrity Flora converts seawater into freshwater and provides in-room filtration stations in every cabin. There are no single-use plastics onboard, and all fish, shellfish, vegetables and fruit are locally sourced.

Celebrity Flora hot tub pool deck and dining room

What's Included

Celebrity Galapagos cruises are all inclusive which means WiFi, excursions, pre-paid gratuities, beverages (alcoholic and non), meals and snacks, excursions and mini bar are included. Laundry is also included and is done twice a week so you can truly can pack lightly (see my previous post about what to pack and what to leave at home). In fact, packing lightly is encouraged since it is a small ship, and Celebrity provides backpacks, sunscreen, raincoats and water bottles.

Food & Amenities

There was no shortage of options for food on the Flora, despite it being a small ship. Breakfast and lunch were eaten at the Seaside Restaurant Buffet and there was a great menu for dinner.

 

There are optional experiences available on board for an additional cost, including Glamping and Dinner under the Stars at the Ocean Grill. If you choose glamping, you will have dinner on deck with campfire-themed food and drinks, a stargazing session with a naturalist followed by sleeping under the stars in a cabana that transforms into a bed. When you awake up with the sunrise in the morning, you will have a private breakfast before starting your day of activities.

 

Celebrity Flora has some features you won’t find on other small ships in the Galapagos. Most notably, the ship offers two plunge pools, a hot tub, private cabanas and a small gym. When you’re not out exploring, the Discovery Lounge is a great place to relax and/or listen to enrichment lectures and at night, it transforms into an entertainment venue. The Flora also has a stunning library space called The Observatory with floor-to-ceiling windows, comfortable seating and books dedicated to learning about the Galapagos islands.

Excursions

There are up to 3 excursion options per day available to choose from, and all are included. The excursions do require that you are able-bodied and have the ability to get in and out of a Zodiac boat that will take you to shore, which can sometimes be rocky and uneven. Some of the excursion options include hiking, snorkeling, kayaking and boat tours. No matter what you choose, you will see a multitude of incredible animals and many that you won’t see anywhere else. We also spent time in the town of San Cristobal, which is not to be missed. There is so much to see and experience in the Galapagos, I could write for days about all the fascinating things I saw. I encourage you to have a look at the photos on my Facebook page, Travel with Teena.

I can’t recommend a cruise to the Galapagos enough. I’d go back in a heartbeat. If you have any questions or want more information, please contact me and I’d be happy to tell you more and help you plan the trip of a lifetime.